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God as Man
Religious people who seek a mood of relationship with God almost always choose an Incarnation as their ishta — the form of God on whom they focus their minds and hearts. The concept of the Incarnation was initially an ancient Eastern idea (or realization) which moved West. You can trace the various Incarnations in different spaces of time and in different cultures by studying history and comparative religions. You can also observe the tremendous impact of the Incarnations on the overall well being of the civilizations which they served.

Devoted worshippers throughout the world are convinced God himself incarnated as man and is worthy of worship. Many people have been persecuted throughout the ages for believing in this tradition and seeking a personal relationship with the Incarnation of God — who is also called avatar, a descent of the Divine. Devotees who have a mood of relationship with an Incarnation, "God as man," ask doubters: if God is real and omnipotent and can create the whole universe including mankind, why can’t he himself incarnate and walk the earth if he chooses?

It’s extremely fascinating for a student of religion to find there is a tradition of the God-man, the Incarnation, in many civilizations throughout history. The incarnation tradition is further complicated and confused, however, because some ancient societies also called their kings divine incarnations.

Specific characteristics mark those great beings who...

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 2010 Mystic World Fellowship